The answer to if the Green Bay Packers deserved to win their Week 10 game over the Dallas Cowboys and if the Green Bay Packers should have won their Week 10 game over the Dallas Cowboys is the same – no.
Their 31-28 overtime victory finally earned them their fourth win of the year, their first W since the beginning of October. A win in Mike McCarthy’s return to Lambeau Field just seems to really scratch that special itch for Packers fans, making that even sweeter.
Green Bay committed plenty of mistakes to deserve to have this game stolen away from them at the end, but Dallas had plenty of miscues themselves to hand the game right back over to the Packers. On the flip side, having lost five consecutive games before their Sunday afternoon affair certainly made it seem like the Packers were cooked, painting a very efficient picture as to why they should not have won.
The Packers rolled out a run-first focus early and often, as Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon combined for 37 carries on the night. Jones had the big game between the two running backs, turning 26 total touches (24 carries) into 156 yards and a rushing TD. Jones also produced 138 yards on the ground, helping set the tone.
Taking the ball out of the hands of Aaron Rodgers certainly can be a scrutinized approach to running an offense, but it seemed to help instill a sense of balance for the offense. Being able to dictate the pace helped Rodgers be more successful in his passing attempts, even though he only had 20 passing attempts in the game.
The real savior of this game was rookie WR Christian Watson, who was finally able to step up (in a historic way) in the absence of what feels like every major pass-catching option. While he did only make four receptions (on 8 targets), Watson made them count, taking three of those catches in for scores.
Just seeing the team rally around Watson and show that they still have faith in him even after his injuries was an awesome sight to see, and it was quite obvious a big-time weight was lifted off of his shoulders after that first TD reception.
It is safe to say that Rudy Ford should have been playing earlier over Darnell Savage, as the former Jacksonville Jaguar safety recorded two interceptions of Dak Prescott, one of which was in the red zone. Needing those types of plays to be made on more of a regular basis, it should be expected that Ford will see more playing time with the starting unit moving forward.
Outside of Ford’s play, this unit did not do a ton that really stood out. Having allowed over 400 total yards (5.3 yards per play) to the Dallas offense yet again speaks to the incapable coaching that Joe Barry has put out on the field on a weekly basis.
On far too many occasions, Jaire Alexander was playing five-plus yards off the line of scrimmage, regardless of coverage. If our high-paid, shutdown cornerback is not being trusted to follow the opposing top WR and to play shutdown press coverage, then why is Barry still the team’s defensive coordinator?
CeeDee Lamb went off for 100+ yards and 2 TDs, Tony Pollard found pay dirt with Ezekiel Elliott out with an injury, and even though Prescott was intercepted twice, he still was able to throw three TDs to salvage a solid day.
There are plenty of issues that this unit needs to iron out moving forward, but at least they were able to show up when the lights were the brightest and held the Cowboys to a failed fourth-down conversion in overtime.뿓뿓뿓
Mike Johrendt has been an avid fan of the Packers ever since he can remember. He is now a writer at PackersTalk and you can follow him on Twitter at @MJohrendt23